By Amy Rollier, Change Enablement Principal
A fundamental step in any technology implementation is establishing the business case. So why do so many companies fall short in going back to the business case to define how success will be measured?
Oftentimes when the conversation turns to how to measure adoption, it focuses on usage and login statistics — and never goes beyond that. However, many platforms fall short of providing the level of out-of-the-box user “click-through tracking” that we would need in order to understand true adoption.
A successful adoption measurement strategy for any system rollout should provide clarity on how we will drive system usage based on performance measurements, incentives, and mandates that help us achieve ROI.
The ultimate goal of any adoption measurement approach should be to change the conversations we are having to be focused on driving behaviors that bring value to our business.
While there are many different perspectives on how to measure your technology investment, we’ve found that a 3-level approach brings simple clarity to this complex topic.
Usage Achievement. The most basic and fundamental achievement is usage. Users logging into the system on a regular basis, and hopefully more than they were logging into the old system.
Behavior Achievement. To achieve the next level, Behavior Achievement, you must first identify the desired user behaviors that will achieve the ROI gains you set out to begin with.
ROI Achievement. When both usage and behavior goals are being met you reach ROI Achievement. At this level, you’ve ideally put a program in place that addresses both of these right out of the gate.
5 Steps for Defining Adoption Criteria
- Define business objectives.
If you don’t already have a business case, begin by defining the key business objectives or goals the technology will support. What pain points are you solving for? What do you hope to achieve? Talk to leaders and ask the big questions; vision needs to come from above.
- Determine behaviors that tie back to the business objectives.
Take a hard look at what you want to measure, but more importantly, why it matters. Get specific with regards to expectations for different roles using the system. Logging into the system is a useful metric, but if users are required to do so for their job — or the new system is replacing an existing system — most likely logging in will not be an issue. Consider the conversations you want managers to be having about system use. For example, it may be important that activities are logged and contacts are updated, but the true meaning of success is whether or not the pipeline is accurate.
- Define reporting needs.
Time to roll up your sleeves and determine the reporting requirements that will help you gain visibility into the desired behaviors noted above.
- Determine incentives and mandates to reinforce behaviors.
This is where many fall short. To truly change behavior, incentives and mandates (sticks and carrots) must be in place to reward and reinforce that behavior. Without simple incentives and the right policies in place, people will not be motivated to change. It might not be so bad to be the worst producer in the company, until your name continuously shows up at the bottom of the leaderboard. Especially if you know your manager (and those up the chain) are actively looking at that leaderboard. The challenge is determining what can be successfully measured and compared against to truly incentivize behavior. This is why steps 3 and 4 are closely tied together, and you will likely need to iterate on them several times. Also, consider exploring custom apps to help facilitate gamification for your incentive plan.
Example incentive: Leaderboard with quarterly team competitions for lead conversions. Winner gets spif and/or recognition by leaders at annual sales event.
Example Mandate: Missed benefit claim case not submitted within a certain timeframe will not be honored/paid.
- Prioritize and implement.
The final step is prioritization of the most achievable and measurable behaviors to focus on day one. Throughout this process you will likely come across a lot of roadblocks. System limitations, reporting limitations, incentive and mandate limitations, or all of the above.
Example objective: “Improve pipeline visibility and quality.”
Example: “Sales Rep enters all deals in the system.” Or, “Pipeline accurately reflects the current state of affairs.”
Example: “Low pipeline to quota ratio.”
Don’t let all your effort fall apart when it comes time to implement. Ensure long-term success and continued ROI return with a strong program management and governance structure.